University of Arizona draft prospect Josh Green confirmed on Monday that he trained in person for the Utah Jazz.
Green also mentioned that he spoke with fellow Aussie Joe Ingles on practice day and then went to dinner with members of the Jazz front office.
“I trained with the Utah Jazz earlier last week,” said Green, noting how impressed he was with the organization. “They have a very structured system in the development of their players.”
To many, that may seem like a lot of attention to be given to a prospect project, especially considering the fact that Green’s name has been associated with Jazz lately.
The freshman keeper, who turned 20 on Monday, has been listed in several mock drafts as the Jazz’s pick at No.23 and fits the profile of the type of defensive-minded, long and versatile player whose team requires.
But Jazz aren’t the only team with ties to Green, and they’re certainly not the only ones interested in him.
Green is close to Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons, speaks to him regularly, and has been in contact with the Sixers.
“I’ve been around Ben Simmons for a while now and he loves it,” Green said of Philadelphia. “It’s a great city and a great basketball culture.”
The Sixers forward and the No. 1 overall selection in the 2016 Draft contacted Green while the draft prospect was still in high school and the two have been in regular contact since then.
“Being able to talk to him and give him advice has been great,” said Green.
Green also said he had long conversations with the Brooklyn Nets and mentioned his connection to New Zealand-born general manager Sean Marks.
Other teams that Green has had practice sessions or talks with include the Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, Dallas Mavericks and Sacramento Kings.
All of the non-Jazz teams mentioned above have higher choices than Jazz, and Jazz is certainly not the only team that drinks and dines prospects. So if the interest is real, Green could be kicked out before the Jazz pick.
On the other hand, it could absolutely be the prospect that the Jazz takes in Wednesday’s draft. Green said his training for Jazz had gone very well and that he had done his best to allay concerns about the two shoulder surgeries he had undergone in the past two years.
While other prospects may become nervous about the extended time between the end of their season and the Nov. 18 draft, Green said the weather has been ideal for him.
Having not had a healthy offseason for the past two years due to rehabilitation after surgeries, the past eight months have seen him gain strength, not only physically but also in areas where he needs to be. improvements like creating space and managing the ball.
His fellow Wildcats Zeke Nnaji and Nico Mannion also said on Monday that they had worked for Jazz, and Jaden McDaniels, who was screened as a possible Jazz choice, said he was interviewed by the Jazz front office. .
Comparatively, Green would be a player with more chances to break into the Jazz rotation in the 2020-21 season, while McDaniels would need a bit more development and admitted he would likely spend time in the season. the G League to get representatives. between games.
McDaniels noted Rudy Gobert’s time in the G League and how he could learn from a guy who took a more developmental path in the NBA.
While we do know the names of some of the players the Jazz have interviewed and coached, there is no doubt that some of this information is kept near the vest so as not to warn the competition. Regardless, we will all know who is interested in the Jazz when they make their selection Wednesday night.